The object in this report is to record the persistence of fibrillation in denervated skeletal muscle, the occurrence of such fibrillation being already thoroughly documented (Schiff,1 Langley and Kato,2 Denny-Brown and Pennybacker3). Significance attaches to the duration of this activity because of the argument, originally presented by Langley4 and recently reviewed by me,5 that denervated skeletal muscle atrophies because it is fatigued by the ceaseless fibrillation. This interpretation contradicts the commonly held clinical view that denervation atrophy is the result of disuse. If the mechanism of atrophy is one of exhaustion by fibrillation, then the fibrillation must continue for a time commensurate with the time course of atrophy. That it does so continue will be demonstrated.
Because the atrophy of skeletal muscle which follows tenotomy and that which follows neurotomy have so frequently been considered as similar phenomena, and because Bosmin6 has reported that
TOWER SS. PERSISTENCE OF FIBRILLATION IN DENERVATED SKELETAL MUSCLE AND ITS NONOCCURRENCE IN MUSCLE AFTER TENOTOMY. Arch NeurPsych. 1939;42(2):219–223. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1939.02270200039003
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